When we went to see Tina Brown on "The Palace Papers" recently she mentioned in passing that she thought Lord Geidt, the Queen's Personal Private Secretary for a decade, was a "safe pair of hands' and a great loss to the Palace.
As ever when I hear of someone from the Royal Household I check them out in my online archives. This time it yielded a story. I've got email conversations from 2011 that are copied to one "Christopher Geidt." They are couched as if they are just a general evaluation of the character sets the Monarchy website that we had developed and supported at the time. They weren't. Do you remember when the Queen delivered a speech in Gaelic during a historic visit to Ireland that year? 'A Uachtaráin, agus a chairde' she began. All the flim flam I was getting was designed to make sure that the Irish orthography (fill your boots here) would be correct when the text went up, and all done without me having a clue. I remember the next day when her words were 100% correct on the Palace website and wrong (unaccented, plain) in the domestic press.
A rule of mine is "Do not ever go toe to toe with people who can combine that level of foresight, attention to detail, and discretion. You will only come off second best." I thought of it again when Geidt resigned as Boris Johnson's ethics advisor after being put in an "odious position."
Thought of it again this week after Geidt said the claims of Boris trying to get Carrie a job “could be ripe for investigation”. For all that the, ahem, networking for jobs proposal was kicked back by, among others, The Royal Foundation, the revolving door between No 10 and the Household is real. Simon Case, the Cabinet Secretary, who made the approach on behalf of BoJo was previously the Cambridge's Private Secretary. Samantha Cohen, Director of Office: 10 Downing Street, was previously Assistant Private Secretary to HM The Queen and that is just off the top of my head.